In a recent finding, a drug which is most often used to control Type 2 diabetes can activate stem cells to produce new brain cells.
This discovery brings in hope of a new way to treat brain injuries as well as neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's.
Researchers found that the drug metformin activates the mechanism which signals stem cells to generate neurons and other brain cells.
Freda Miller, a senior scientist at SickKids said, "If you could take stem cells that normally reside in our brains and somehow use drugs to recruit them into becoming appropriate neural cell types, then you may be able to promote repair and recovery in at least some of the many brain disorders and injuries for which we currently have no treatment. This work is happening against a background of a lot of excitement in the stem cell field about the idea that since we now know that we have stem cells in many of our adult tissues, then perhaps if we could figure out how to pharmacologically tweak those stem cells, then perhaps we could help to promote tissue repair."